Musical Postcards: Some Interesting New Zealand Band-Related Ephemera
by Ian Duggan
I couldn’t help but pick myself up some unusual merchandise at The Bats gig at Nivara Lounge on March 6; a set of 16 postcards featuring images of a selection of their posters for gigs from New Zealand, European, American and Australian tours between 1982 and 2013! These I have added to a ragtag collection of other New Zealand band-related postcards, released over the last 35+ years.
Beyond these, there have been a number of postcards of New Zealand bands in the past. Postcard production enjoyed a mini-resurgence in the mid-1990s to early-2000s, when giveaway postcards could be found in all good cafes – including Hamilton’s favourite of the time, Metropolis Caffe. These included advertisements for recent and upcoming releases, including for a number from the Flying Nun label. Among my collection I have postcards advertising Martin Phillips and the Chills’ 1995 ‘Come Home’ single, the 3Ds’ 1996 ‘Strange New from the Angels’ album, and (The Bats-related) The Magick Heads ‘Before we go Under’ album (1995). While these all had room for an address, stamp and message, other postcard-sized cards were also released at the time purely for advertising purposes; on these, the entire reverse-sides were taken up with information about the releases themselves. These include International Tall Dwarfs’ ‘Stumpy’ (1997), King Loser’s ‘Caul of the Outlaw’ (1996), Bressa Creeting Cake’s 1997 self-titled album, and Dimmer’s ‘Don’t Make me Buy out your Silence’ single (1996). Not all cards from the time were from Flying Nun, however, with other postcards including those for the ‘Aotearoa Hip Hop Vol. 1’ tour and release (1998), and Strawpeople’s ‘No New Messages’ album (2000).